Iowans all across the state were shocked and saddened this morning by the news that Senator Pat Ward had passed away after losing her battle with breast cancer.Â She had servedÂ as a Republican in the Iowa Senate since 2004 and was an extremely respectedÂ womanÂ and legislator.Â The following are statements released by Governor Branstad, Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds, and Republican Party of Iowa Chairman A.J Spiker, and TCR Publisher Art Smith.
All of us at The Conservative Reader pass on our sincere condolences to the Ward family. Â She will be missed.
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â€œI was with shock and sadness that learned of my friend Pat Wardâ€™s passing. She had a wonderful career in public service, and was such a caring and passionate person. As a senator, she was a champion for her district, took the time to get to know the issues, and worked in a bipartisan manner to enact meaningful legislation on behalf of her constituents. She always had a positive outlook on life, even in illness, and her smile would brighten each room she entered. The thoughts and prayers of Chris and I are extended to her large network of family, friends and constituents.â€
Lt. Governor Reynolds
â€œHaving served with Pat in the Senate, I witnessed firsthand her dedication to the state of Iowa, and her incredible work every day on behalf of her constituents. Pat Ward was a dear friend, and the news of her passing is incredibly difficult and painful to hear. I hope all Iowans will look at her example, the way she cared for others and worked to make the world a better place, and remember her significant life and achievements. Our administration will miss her as a policy maker, and we all will personally miss her as a friend.â€
RPI Chairman A.J Spiker
“I am saddened to learn of the passing of Iowa State Senator Pat Ward. Public service and dedication to the people of Iowa were hallmarks of her career. On behalf of all Iowa Republicans, I would like to express our gratitude for Pat’s service to the people of Iowa. Our thoughts and prayers are with Pat’s friends and family during this difficult time.”
TCR Publisher Art Smith
“Pat was a kind and dedicated woman who was always interested in hearing the opinions of others, especially her constituents. Â During my brief opportunities in speaking with Pat, I found her to be charming and very well informed on the issues. Â As my senator, I was surprised that she not only remembered me whenever we crossed paths, but on our first acquaintance quickly connected me to a single letter I had written her in the past. Â I sincerely admired herÂ person-ability.”
(For a complete overview by TCR:Iowa of the Iowa Senate races click here)
Jerry Behn (R)Â vs.Â Shelly Stotts (D)
Jerry Behn is the incumbent and was elected to the Senate in 1995 after serving one year as Boone County Supervisor.Â He was then elected Senate Minority leader on November 10th, 2011.Â Shelly Stotts has been a teacher in Boone for the last 28 years, has her Masters Degree in Education, and is a past president of the Boone Educators Association.
Senate District 24 sits due North of Dallas County.Â Itâ€™s new configuration after redistricting shaves off Dallas County and replaces it with the Southeastern portion of Webster County and the Northwestern corner of Story County.Â These slivers join all of Hamilton, Greene, and Boone Counties to construct SD 24.Â The registered voter numbers here are less favorable to Jerry Behn than his old district was, though he still holds an advantage of R+1,379.Â The rest of the numbers are: (R-13,465) (D-12,086) (NP-14,553), with the district total being 40,132.
Much like Senate District 38, this goes in the leaner column by just a hair and should be a victory for Behn.Â In addition to campaigning hard, Jerry Behn has been one of the point men rolling out the Republican legislative agenda titledÂ “Iowa Strong“â€”which is a fairly specific, multi-issue priorities list for the upcoming session.
Despite being a well-liked legislator, a fantastic spokesman for the Republican Party, and a likely victor in his November re-election bidâ€”Behn has come under fire this year from fellow Republicans for not raising the kind of funds necessary for a Republican takeover of the Senate.Â There is really no way to say the criticism is unjustified, as part of his job as minority leader is building a war chest that can be distributed to other Republican candidates throughout the state.Â As of the last filing period he was outraised by his counterpart, Democratic Majority Leader Mike Gronstal, by more than $416,000.
Democrat Shelly Stotts is attempting to transition from a long career in teaching to Senator by taking down the highest ranking Republican in the Senate.Â Though the registration advantage is surely able to be overcome, Mrs. Stotts will have a hard time doing so for two major reasons.Â First, though Behnâ€™s cash on hand is low for a Minority Leader, he still has $83,383 in the bank to Stottsâ€™ $1,528.Â Secondly, she has identified her political views on her own Facebook page as â€œliberalâ€.Â Though laudable for her honestyâ€”this self-description combined with her money disadvantage is not a recipe for an upset.
Frankly, I am surprised that more Democrats have not stepped up to the plate with donations.Â You would expect this to be the case being that the newly drawn district left a Republican Senate Minority Leader with such a small voter registration advantage.Â Put simply it would be a shock not to see Jerry Behn back in the Senate in 2013â€”and the possibility of him being at the helm of a newly minted Republican majority is certainly within reach.
Jerry Behn – Candidate Profile
Shelly Stotts – Facebook Page
(Complete TCR: Iowa overview of the races crucial to Republicans winning a majority in the Iowa Senate)
(For a complete overview by TCR: Iowa of the Iowa Senate races click here)
Tim Kapucian (R)Â vs.Â Shelley Parbs (D)
Tim Kapucian is the incumbent, having first been elected to the Senate in 2009.Â Shelley Parbs is a first time candidate and a production worker at Rockwell-Collins.
Iowa Senate District 38 is located Northeast of Des Moines, halfway between Polk County and the Illinois border.Â It is made up entirely of three whole counties (Poweshiek, Iowa, and Benton).Â The number breakdown of registered voters in SD 38 is as follows: (R-12,549) (D-10,963) (NP-16,512), which leaves a Republican advantage of +1,586.
Since being elected in 2009 Tim Kapucian has taken on a high profile role in the Senate minority.Â This includes, but is not limited to, being elected Assistant Republican Leader and being the ranking member of the Senate Transportation Committee and the Transportation, Infrastructure and Capitals Appropriations Subcommittee.Â The Bleeding Heartland makes the very good observation that Democrats will attack hard on the fact that he is on the record twice voting for an increase in the per-gallon tax on gasoline.Â Kapucian has gotten major backing from Farm Bureau and, beyond being a farmer himself, this is likely not a coincidence as they spent the last year leaning on Republicans to support this unpopular price hike.
Shelley Parbs easily won a three way Democratic Primary to earn the right to take on Kapucian.Â She is a production worker with Rockwell-Collins and a member of the union, IBEW.Â Mrs. Parbs appears to be another Democratic labor union candidate (sheâ€™s been endorsed by every union in a 50 mile radius), and yet another Democratic candidate with absolutely no information on her campaign website regarding her political views or agenda.Â All the visitor gets is that Parbs wants to â€œinvest in worker trainingâ€ and â€œmake sure jobless Iowans get the help they need to get back on thier feetâ€.Â This is the case with so many of these Democrat candidates that it is beyond a trend and is surely an intentional strategy from the political higher-ups in the Party.Â How they are expecting to bring anyone into the campaign with no information on issues, not even platitudesâ€”fully escapes me.
This seat is a strong Republican leaner because the challenger is not that threatening and the Republican Party will not let Kapucian go without plenty of resources and attention.Â He made not need much help, as the fact that he already had a $41 thousand to $15 thousand dollar cash on hand advantage as of July 19th shows he doesnâ€™t exactly struggle in the fund raising department.
It strikes me that this race could be very interesting if there was a Democrat surge for the candidate on the presidential ballot, as there was in 2008 for Obama.Â The fact is this will not be the case in 2012 and Senator Kapucian should be returning to the Senate, perhaps in the majority, in 2013.
Tim Kapucian — Senate Republican Caucus page
Shelley Parbs — Shelley4Senate
(Complete TCR: Iowa overview of the races crucial to Republicans winning a majority in the Iowa Senate)
First, some chemistry; iodine turns black when exposed to starch. So, a lighter ink which contains iodine will turn black when it comes into contact with starch, which is included in the manufacturing process of standard copy paper. When the ink is used on paper that doesnâ€™t contain starch (such as most paper made with cotton fiber instead of wood pulp) the ink will maintain a sort of brownish-yellow color.
If you pay for gasoline with a fifty dollar bill, chances are the cashier will make a mark on it with a counterfeit detector pen. American currency, made of cotton fiber and not including starch, will leave the ink that lighter color. Counterfeit currency printed on regular paper will make the ink turn black.
Interestingly enough, counterfeit currency made with cotton fiber parchment paper, available at every stationary supply store in the country, will pass as genuine under the ink test. The Secret Service, which investigates counterfeiting, doesnâ€™t include the detector pens in their list of recommendations for examining currency.
So, a counterfeit bill passes the test and is accepted by a cashier. Later, the bank where the money is deposited is able to detect that it is fake. The incident makes headlines, and every store in town attempts to take precautions – by buying counterfeit detector pens, which will give a passing grade to upscale resume stationary. A completely pointless test creates a new vulnerability and becomes utterly absurd.
It appears to me that just about everything sold as urgently necessary is, upon closer examination, completely pointless and utterly absurd.
Prairie Meadows Casino was billed as a way to revitalize the economy. It is owned by Polk County, and the revenue was supposed to fund education, roads, and economic development.
Much of the money is used to pay the interest on the tax-exempt bonds issued to build the Iowa Events Center – which, although a lovely facility, employs only a handful of people and isnâ€™t exactly the urban goldmine that developers always claim to have in their hip pocket.
I havenâ€™t been to a casino in years and donâ€™t intend to go back. Gambling used to be a risquÃ© vice; now it is nothing more than another way to feed the voracious wolves.
Speed cameras should go in this category as well because they donâ€˜t stop speeding nor do they protect the public. I was on the interstate in Cedar Rapids a while back, and everyone around me was driving above the speed limit. Upon approaching the sign indicating a traffic camera, they all slammed on the brakes very hard. After passing the camera, they sped up again.
Furthermore, I could drive down that stretch of highway drunk, while sending a text message, and using hallucinogenic drugs- but as long as I am not speeding, the camera is useless.
Government at all levels promises to build roads and develop your economy.Â What actually happens is that they tax you, fine you, and monitor you – and the roads are still terrible. Infrastructure projects have become the best Trojan Horse to sneak in a tax increase- actually go and take a look at the budget of your local government. How much of your tax money goes to bond interest for infrastructure projects?
Iowa Title Guaranty, a part of the Iowa Finance Authority, was created in 2001. You see, in Iowa, when you buy a house it is traditional to have a lawyer review a title abstract and write an opinion about it. In every other state, you just buy title insurance, and when the big investment banks started jamming mortgages together into mortgage-backed securities they got used to having a standardized title insurance policy along with their mortgages.
They simply didnâ€™t know how to deal with an attorneyâ€™s title opinion letter. Pity. It looked like Iowans might be denied the joy of subprime mortgages, and would have to make do with conforming loans.
But, not to worry! Here comes the state legislature with Iowa Title Guaranty, offering what the big investment banks were used to seeing. Oh, the joy of it; Iowans would have access after all to mortgages with bad terms, adjustable rates, and given without regard to lending standards. Being suckered into bad loans is practically a human right, after all. Title Guaranty – Completely pointless, and utterly absurd.
Even jobs can be completely pointless and utterly absurd. Anything involving the â€œgreen economyâ€ springs to mind. Being paid by the government to build solar panels that will never be installed, for instance. Sure, a few people earned a few paychecks before Solyndra folded, but they produced absolutely nothing of value for the economy as a whole.
The Federal Reserve was billed as a way to avoid economic crises and facilitate greater wealth. In the end, it facilitated the largest fiscal and trade deficits in human history. Since 1990, we have run aggregate trade deficits in excess of eight trillion dollars, which is interesting because back in 1990 the M2 supply was only three trillion dollars. Either we ran out of currency (three times) or we were paying for imports with inflation.
When the Byzantines wanted to buy Chinese silk, they had to sell glass and other wares, or else they would have run out of gold. (They ended up stealing silk worms and producing it themselves). We can buy foreign goods by doing nothing more complicated than printing money.
Politicians offer to solve this problem with government action – either stimulus spending or trade wars – but never with stable currency policy, making any of their efforts completely pointless and utterly absurd.
I believe that our future as a nation will come down to whether or not we can successfully identify the completely pointless and utterly absurd things swirling around in our government, our economy, our businesses, and our culture. This will involve a great deal of complaining, which fortunately is the only real talent I possess. Now, to find a way to earn tons of money while doing it.
With Part 1 of this story covering the entire forum minus the last five minutes, lets dig right into the controversy that marked the conclusion of Mondayâ€™s forum and went on to engulf the local media in the following days.
What Was Said
For those who have not heard or read it yet, here is the transcript of the most controversial remarks from Sheriff McCarthyâ€™s closing statement:
â€œâ€¦Then the other day I opened his website and heâ€™s got a reference on there to the Oath Keepers.Â The Oath Keepers!Â Itâ€™s a group that affiliated with this (holds up book), but they areÂ the big boys.Â Â These are people on a Patriots list from the National Poverty Law Center, a watch list for extreme radicalism.Â (Timothy) McVeigh died going to his grave saying that he was that kind of patriot.Â This guy that runs the Oath Keepers movement, who says heâ€™s a Constitutionalist, has now come out on his website and said itâ€™s time to arm because we think Obama might win.Â Itâ€™s time to arm, and itâ€™s also time to store food for the war thatâ€™s coming (crowd starts booing).Â This is the kind of garbage youâ€™re going to get if he (points to Charleston) is elected.Â Itâ€™s really about as radical as it gets.â€
Though utterly indefensible and unjustified, there are two factors that should at least be understood when thinking about McCarthyâ€™s attitude and conduct on this night.
I believe it fair to realize that for the last year or so Sheriff McCarthy has been listening to and watching Dan Charleston run for his job by basically saying that his department is a poorly run outfit plagued by low morale that needs whole-sale changes to better serve and protect the people of Polk County.Â I am not for a moment saying that these things are untrue, but I am saying that very few of us, if any, have experienced this situationâ€”and clearly it would be extremely tough and frustrating.Â To continually hear on the radio strong criticism that you are failing in a job you are personally invested in and passionate about is no small thing, and certainly would wear on anybody.Â Secondly, and unknown to me until after the fact, apparently Sheriff McCarthyâ€™s own brother was killed in the Oklahoma City Bombing carried out by Timothy McVeigh.
The Bottom Line
The above information is presented solely to give some context to an allegation and line of logic that is nothing short of disgraceful and bizarreâ€”there is just no getting around that.Â While the whole closing statement was overboard, the last sentence elevated the charge to a different level.
Itâ€™s one thing to raise questions about a quote on Dan Charlestonâ€™s website from some group who you view to be extremist in order to cast doubt about where your opponent is coming fromâ€”some may even define this as â€œhard ballâ€ politics (I would use the word â€œdirtyâ€).Â It is yet another step-up to imply that all this groupsâ€™ beliefs and actions can be attributed to Charleston.Â Rather unfortunately Sheriff McCarthy didnâ€™t even stop here.
Though it was hard to hear in the auditorium at the time due to the crowds audible gasp and objections, the last sentence that McCarthy uttered that night was, â€œAnd this is the kind of garbage you are going to get if he is elected, itâ€™s really about asÂ radical as you can get.â€Â Beyond being baseless, irrational, and recklessâ€”this is legal slander that demands, in the least, a public apology.
Impact On This Race
In my view this stands as the second most bizarre episode in Iowa politics this yearâ€”bested only by Republican Senate candidate Randi Shannonâ€™s break from realityâ€”and will certainly hurt his chances in the November election.Â Besides being a huge public relations misstep, McCarthyâ€™s conduct and slander was a head-scratcher politically, as it runs counter to the broader-themed case he has been making against Charleston from the beginning.
Besides saying that Charleston is wrong on the issues, McCarthyâ€™s general assertion to voters is that he is more professional and well-mannered while Charlestonâ€™s temperament and straight-talking boldness are the wrong traits to have heading the Sheriffâ€™s Department.Â It is beyond ironic that the man making this case, even saying himself during the forum that you canâ€™t â€œbare your soul on every social issueâ€, would himself make a reckless and bizarre allegation by publically â€œbaringâ€ his own outlandish and paranoid beliefs about Dan Charleston.Â It is truly as unbelievable and nonsensical as it is hypocritical.
The fact that these two candidates have opposite beliefs on nearly every issue already presented a clear choice for the citizens of Polk County.Â Â Sheriff McCarthyâ€™s outlandish display in the waning moments of Mondayâ€™s forum have made this pictureâ€™s contrast even sharperâ€¦and made the prospect of him keeping his job far less likely.
Much of the story from Monday nightâ€™s forum between current Polk County Sheriff Bill McCarthy and Sheriff Candidate Dan Charleston occurred in the final minutes where, by any reasonable standard, Bill McCarthy crossed the line from aggressively campaigning to keep his jobâ€”to down-right personal slander.Â We will get to that in due time, but first here is a quick re-cap of the event and the many defining differences between these two men that are at the core of this simmering race.
The forum was held in the North High School auditorium, where a large crowd left only the back few rows of seats empty, and was put on by a consortium of neighborhood groups called the â€œDes Moines Neighborsâ€.Â The forum was very well run and to say interest in this Sheriffs race around Polk County is high would be an understatementâ€”I have attended several high-profile legislative forums and debates which had a fraction of the crowd that Mondayâ€™s event had.
The mood of the audience and the two candidates onstage throughout the evening could be best described as â€œtenseâ€â€”before exploding in the final minutes during Sheriff McCarthyâ€™s closing statement.Â While Dan Charleston kept his tone firm and relatively respectful, Bill McCarthy was repeatedly and openly condescending, dismissive, and at times insulting.Â While obviously there is no love lost between the two, McCarthyâ€™s conduct and attitude from the beginning stood out as being unprofessional and wholly unnecessary.Â Now that the scene is set and you have an idea of the atmosphereâ€”letâ€™s move onto the substance.
These two candidates see eye-to eye on very little, and the disagreements fit into two clear categoriesâ€”1) internal department policy, and 2) what essentially amounts to political issues.
The internal department issues at hand concern promotion practices, the size and distribution of the force, and the additional $5 charge that Sheriff McCarthy has added on to the cost of receiving gun permits.Â Since these issues are mainly known only to department employees and their friends and family we will not cover them in detail.Â A brief summation is that Dan Charleston strongly believes the department is too top-heavy, that the promotion policy is being dealt with unfairly, and that the additional charge on gun permits should be removed.Â In terms of the departmentâ€™s staff allocation, Charleston has made it clear he would remove several supervisory positions and replace them with more patrols and more â€œboots on the groundâ€.Â Obviously, since he is in charge of the department currently, McCarthy largely supports these things as they are.
The Political Issues
Lacking theÂ time to reasonably go into each in detail, what follows is a surface level look–largely in their own word–at the top three hot-button issues the two candidates sparredÂ over on this evening.
1) Illegal Immigration
Sheriff McCarthy â€“ After being coy by saying he would â€œlike to see some changesâ€ in this area, though failing to mention any, he summarized his position by saying, â€œLocal law enforcement, despite the lies you hear on the radio month after month, are not empowered to arrest people who are undocumentedâ€”or what you would call â€œillegalâ€.â€Â He then went on to make the case that if illegal aliens are arrested we would only â€œfill our jailsâ€.
Dan Charlestonâ€”Clearly Charleston would be tougher on enforcement and he referenced the oath he took both in the military and in the Sheriffâ€™s Department to â€œprotect and serveâ€.Â He went on to say, â€œWhen the coyotes bring these guys over here in two days for $1,500 it doesnâ€™t mean we turn a blind eye to it and let everything they want to do with the cartels and the gangs we have right here in Des Moines just happen.Â It means you have a duty to protect and serve the citizens you were elected by.â€
2)Â Traffic Cameras
Sheriff McCarthyâ€”Supports both the concept and the expansion of Automated Traffic Enforcement, and made the point that it costs the department nothing up front for the companies to come in and set the systems up.Â He called the Constitutional arguments against them misleading and summarized his position by saying, â€œI want to give these (the cameras) a shot, and I hope they save some lives.â€
Dan Charlestonâ€”Strongly opposes the concept and practice mainly on 6th Amendment â€œface your accuserâ€ grounds, and also for the fact he believes it is a ploy to generate more revenue.Â He concluded his answer with, â€œIf it was a safety issue why do they let you go 11 mph over the speed limit?…Iâ€™m sure people would rather have a patrolman out there than a camera taking pictures of them.â€
3)Â Stand Your Ground
Sheriff McCarthyâ€”Does not support the legislation largely because it takes discretion away from the officers and gives it to the County Attorney.Â He then added, â€œItâ€™s not good legislation, on the surface it looks goodâ€¦but letâ€™s not give people a free hand to be violent and mean-spirited to others.â€
Dan Charleston–Â When asked,Â “Would you support Stand Your Ground legislation?”, Charleston simply answered, “Yes I would.”
*****To read more from Dan Charleston checkout his “3 Questions with The Conservative Reader:Iowa” from earlier this year*****
(For a complete overview of all the Iowa Senate races click here)
Larry Kruse (R) vs. Rich Taylor (D)
Larry Kruse has been on the Lee County Board of Supervisors since 2002, and Rich Taylor is a retired HVAC Technician for Fort Madison Iowa State Penitentiary and a former Union Steward and Treasurer
Senate District 42 sits in the very Southeastern corner of Iowa.Â It includes all of Lee, most of Henry, and small parts of Jefferson and Washington counties.Â The Democrats start with a registration advantage of 2,408, with the breakdown being: (D- 13,344) (R- 10,936) and (NP-13,501).
Both candidates won primaries to gain their parties nomination, but the path each took was very different.Â Democrat Rich Taylor somewhat surprisingly won by 15 points, while Larry Kruse demolished his opponent by more than doubling him up.
I have this seat leaning Democrat–but just barely.Â Of all the 8 leaners I see this seat as most likely to go the other way.Â Taylor has the advantage in registrations– and he will need every bit of it.Â Kruse holds the advantage in experience and cash on hand as of July 19th ($5,402 to $3,193), and could veryÂ well pull out the victory.
Noteworthy here is that Rich Taylor is yet another Democratic Union member candidate vying for a seat in the legislature.Â The amount of Union candidates representing the Democrat Party on the ballot this year is truly staggering and points to the fact they believe it may be a down year for Democrats, thusÂ needing the Union get out the vote push more than ever, and that a collective bargaining showdown with Governor Branstad is on the horizon.
Also worth a mention, as you can see yourself by clicking the link below, is that Rich Taylor is yet another Democrat candidate whose campaign website makes absolutely no mention of issues, positions, platform, or legislative priorities.Â In my book this approach is both unsettling and unacceptable, and begs the question…if you are not going to be open and accountable to your potential constituents when you are seeking their support–how in the world can you be expected to be open and accountable to them once you are in office?
Larry Kruse – Kruse4Senate.org
Rich Taylor – RichTaylor4StateSenate.com
(For a complete overview of the Iowa Senate races click here)
Mike Gronstal (D) vs.Â Al Ringgenberg (R)
Mike Gronstal is the longtime incumbent, and Al Riggenberg is a retired Air Force Colonel and former prosecutor.
Senate District 8 is on the Southwestern border of Iowa and is essentially made up of the city of Council Bluffs.Â Incumbent Mike Gronstal was first elected to the Iowa House in 1982.Â After serving one term there he moved up to the Senate in 1986, and has been the Democratic Leader in that bodyÂ for the last 15 years.Â In short, he is the definition of an entrenched Democrat legis-saur (legislator+dinosaur).Â The registered voter breakdown for SD 8 is (D-10,606) (R-10,020) (NP-10,720), leaving a D+586 advantage.
At the beginning of campaign season Republicans rightfully believed this year was the best shot they have had to unseat their biggest political enemy.Â What has transpired since is nothing short of depressing for the Iowa GOP, and the word I hear from insiders is the chances of flipping this seat are now very low.Â Â The reasons for the initial Republican optimismÂ were (1)Â the district was almost dead even, with Independents sure to be ruffled up by Gronstal’s numerous high-profile legislative blockades, and (2) they managed to field a great candidate on paper in retired Colonel Al Ringgenberg.
To this point in the campaign, for whatever reason, Ringgenberg has failed to gain much traction.Â Perhaps more importantly he has failed to generate the kind of money it would take to compete with Gronstal’s massive war-chest.Â No matter how much Ringgenberg raised he was not going to be in the ballpark of Gronstal’s unbelievable $547,158.00, but there is no getting aroundÂ his disappointing cash on hand number of $6,987.00 (which includes a $2,000 loan to himself).
There is still plenty of time, but the Ringgenberg campaign really needs to catch fire and take the fight to Gronstal.Â If he is unable to bank some more money soon he will have a difficult time doing so with $7,000 (as of July 19th).Â At the moment I unfortunately have this seat leaning strongly Democrat.Â You will see by following the link below that Gronstal is yet another Iowa DemocratÂ who has chosen to disclose absolutely nothing on where he stands on current issues orÂ hisÂ future politicalÂ goals on his website. This practiceÂ is especially shameful for a longtime Majority leader who is personally responsible for blocking Iowans from having a voice on countless issues (including tax reform and gay marriage).
Al Ringgenberg – ColonelAl.com
Mike Gronstal – MikeGronstal.com
(The following piece is a guest writer contribution from Chad Brown)
Iowaâ€™s Latino Heritage Festival is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year and has grown into the largest cultural event in our state.Â This is a family event that offers something for everyone.Â It is a time of celebration.Â I also feel it is time to engage in an honest conversation.Â I want to present my argument for why the Republican Party is the best Party to advance the best interests of Latinos in our city, state and country.
We are witnessing the progressive growth of Latino businesses in Iowa. They generate millions in sales every year and create thousands of jobs for Iowans.Â Latino businesses are among the fastest growingÂ Â segments of the small-business-community in our state.Â In a time of economic doldrums, we wish success on all business.
The health of the Latino business community depends on the risks taken by everyday people who want to take a chance and build something out of nothing.Â This is how business has always operated in the United States.Â This is the American Dream.Â Small business embodies the hope of this nation to build a better life for ourselves and our children.Â The Latino community has much to celebrate during the Latino Festival.
Republicans encourage the Latino community to continue their pursuit of the American Dream. We disagree with Obama that business owners donâ€™t build their businesses.Â We have countless examples in the family-owned small businesses that now face unprecedented government regulations. Republicans sympathize with the individuals who struggle day and night to make ends meet and keep their workers employed.Â We share the worries of the workers who are concerned they will find themselves unemployed due to a stagnant economy.
Republicans, like Myself, are optimists. We believe this century can be a time of incredible prosperity for every single person in our country who is willing to try â€“ if we create an environment where entrepreneurs, both in the Latino community and in all communities, can flourish.Â This growth in the Latino community can be sustained by low taxes and energized by new technologies.Â Prosperity for small business and workers can be reached if their businesses are unleashed through lighter regulation.Â We can expand our growth through free trade with our neighbors.Â We have an opportunity beyond all our expectations that is within our grasp.
The Latino community, along with all other communities, can reach unprecedented levels of success through allying the Republican Party. Every group owes itself the ability to flourish in the United States. The Republican Party has candidates who know how to encourage the growth of both large and small businesses.Â Together, we can accomplish goals beyond anyoneâ€™s wildest expectations.
The post Latino Heritage Festival: A Time of Celebration & Time to Consider Who Best Serves Latinos appeared first on The Conservative Reader.
Below are links to flyers for two upcoming events for Senate candidate Dave Edwards.Â If you are in his district and want to learn more about him and his positions, these are perfect oppurtunitiues to talk to him in person.
Family Fun Fest & Chili Supper!Â Â Â Â Â (Adobe Acrobat required)
Fall Freedom Fest Motorcycle rally!Â Â (Adobe AcrobatÂ required)
Below are the official endorsements Senate candidate Vicki Stogdill has earned this week:
Iowa Family PAC endorsementÂ Â Â Â Â Â (Adobe AcrobatÂ required)
National Federation of Independent Business Endorsement